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evenings the “Memorials of Canterbury," that people can hardly imagine? When by Dean Stanley, so that when we were they walked down to the sea, they could shown through the Cathedral, and the one side look on the steep rocks of scene of the murder of Thomas à Becket Hartland Point, and on the other side was pointed out to us, one of the girls were the wild spurs of the Cornish coast. exclaimed, " Why, that is just what was in Then at other times they could wander the book !” They thus gained their first about the delicious garden, through all idea of history. Not a moment was spared the luxuriant growth of Devonshire flowfrom the enjoyment of the fresh air; some The three weeks' visit is never contimes the girls would rub their cheeks cluded before they have been taken to with the salt water and then lie down in see that unique and most enchanting the sun unprotected from the rays, in spot in England, Clovelly, with its steep, hopes they would thus get red faces, which precipitous road down to the sea, which to their minds was the greatest beauty no cart or carriage can traverse, as it
they could possess, as it was a sign of is by many steps that you descend the health. It was a happiness to see their joy, long street. and any trouble or fatigue was amply Let me speak of one of the three visits compensated by the sense of the perfectly we paid to the Marquis and Marchioness pure, simple, wholesome happiness which of Sligo at Loseley Hall, a beautiful was given to this holiday party.
Elizabethan house belonging to Mr. MolyAnother time a house was lent to us at neux, whose ancestors had received here Herne Bay for a few days. This again the great Queen Elizabeth on a visit. We we enjoyed very much.
were all lodged during our four days' visit One of the ladies of our Soho Club in June of the Whitsun holidays in the Council, Mrs. Stueley, has for many years daintily furnished guest-rooms. invited two girls in August to stay in her I do not think any fairy tale could have own house at Hartland Abbey. Can you devised a more lovely transformation fancy the happiness of these visitors, who scene than that of our eighteen Soho Club come from the toiling, noisy, heated atmos- girls, released from their toil, freed from phere of London, to revel in these natural the noise and bustle of the great city, beauties, which take hold of them in a way transported from their overcrowded streets
and homes to this lovely abode, warmly Castle of Guildford, we were actually welcomed by their hostess, shown the driven out to the great public school of gardens, the park, the woods, the fields, Charter House, and were present at a which they were bidden to visit when they concert. Each day some of the girls went pleased; no restrictions, perfect liberty, out very early, anxious to see the dew on a liberty which I may say is never abused. the grass and the early rising sun. I must And what delicious country food, the say we had a most perfect time of hapbread, the butter, the milk, the eggs—were piness; I will not say the be for has they not all of superlative excellence ! not each visit been delightful ?
And if to us who have so much pleasure In the last few years the girls have had a country visit is delightful, what must most happy weeks in Cumberland: they it be to our hard-worked girls ? The have lived in cottages close to Muncaster natural shyness of finding themselves in Castle, under Scawfell, which they as such new surroundings soon wears off, cended with Lady Morpeth, whose guests when all are prepared to make them they were; the pleasure of the ascent being happy; the kind servants, with whom somewhat enhanced by the peril of being they had their meals on this visit, did not caught in a mist as they came down. consider the large inroad as a trouble ; Two or three weeks they spent there; they also made the girls most welcome. every day an excursion was planned for
We arrived on a Saturday afternoon, them to the moors, to the river, to the and on the Sunday we walked through sea, or up the mountain ; and the first the park to the pretty village and to the sight of mountains is as great and thrillparish church. Mademoiselle de Peyronet, ing a sensation as the first sight of the the sister of our hostess, brought us back sea, and is one never to be forgotten. another way, and what laughter and amuse More than twenty of our members have ment were caused, as we walked through been to Cumberland. Some of them paid the deep lane, at our shoes filling and re a visit to me in a charming cottage in the filling with the light sand! Then, in the heart of the mountains, that had been afternoon. what a walk we had to the lent to me by Lady Muncaster. Here we Hog's Back, looking over the wooded pas had a very pleasant time, endless walks tures of Surrey, the view stretching far over the mountains and the moors, bring away till we thought we could see the sea ! ing home wild flowers and blackberries,
On Monday, after visiting the ruined which we made into jam. The cottage
was close to a beautiful mountain river with its
with its interesting walls and quaint and a very fine waterfall ; every day one streets. While at Portmadoc we had the of the girls, who had learned to swim at ascent of Snowdon, the visit to Mr. Oakthe London baths, plunged into the river ley's beautiful place, Tan y Broleh, where and swam round and round the deep pool. a most excellent dinner was served for This same girl, who had been a member us in the dining-room, which overlooked of our Club for fifteen years, had read the valley and mountains ; then a drive and loved and pondered over some of through the woods and the journey on Ruskin's books, and she had the great the Toy railway. Another day we went pleasure of paying a visit with me to all over the slate quarry, and were shown Coniston and of being introduced to Mr. everything by the manager; another Ruskin, who very kindly spoke to her, morning we made an early start in a tug and she told him what a help his , written to visit the Harbor Bar, recalling as we words had been to her in her own life, went the beautiful poem of The Crossparticularly those in " A Joy Forever, " ing of the Bar.” After a perfect weck where he tells us that “wisdom is the spent at Portmadoc we went on to Holyreward of kindness, of modesty, of indus head, seeing Carnarvon Castle on the way. try." three simple qualities we felt that Another week was only too quickly passed the humblest might try to possess. Her as guests of the Dowager Lady Stanley of introduction to these books had been Alderley, a week ever to be prized ard made when .on a visit at Haslemere to probably never to be equaled, with expediMrs. Macmillan, who had read some pas tions up the mountains, visits to the South sages from “Modern Painters” to her, Stack, the sight there of the sea-gulls busy which had revealed to this London toiler in their noisy preparation for departure the higher aspects of life and the beauties on the 12th of August. There were the of nature.
daily bathing and swimming in the sea, Once more let me tell of the visit to moonlight walks, visits to the almshouses, Wales, those most happy days, never to and to the Welsh women with their tall be forgotten by any one of our party. We hats, and to the Breakwater.
Here was stayed first at Portmadoc for a week, but the first introduction of our girls to a real on the journey from London the eight hero, a fisherman, one who had saved girls had stopped at Chester to be shown three men from a wreck with his small by Mrs. Tom Hughes that ancient town fishing-boat, and to whom since had been
down to a dinner of many courses, with a menu for each girl to keep as a record of the festivity. In the afternoon the parties for brakes andlaunch were reversed, and a right splendid day was passed.
There remains yet one more holiday party to record our first foreign trip, which took place in August, 1898. We had often talked of going abroad, and at last we started, a party of twenty-sixteen of our club members and three of my friends, one of them an actress from America, who had never before been on the Continent. The journey was made from London to Ostend by boat, and then an hour's
ride brought the party PEASANTS AT MIDDLEBURG
to Bruges, where we given the command of a splendid lifeboat lodged in a most comfortable house on close to the scene of the wreck.
a canal, 12 Quai des Trinturiers. We I have by no means enumerated all our breakfasted all together, sometimes at six country visits ; space does not allow of it; if we made an early start, otherwise at but not one day's pleasure, not one act of eight o'clock; dinner and supper again kindness, can be forgotten by those who were movable feasts. Our ten days have experienced it.
were planned out so as to see all we Days out in the country to Mentmore, could of the beautiful towns of Belgium. to Coldham Hall, to Maidenhead, to A long day enabled us to get to Brussels Rockhampton, to Burnham Beeches,' to and Ghent. We walked and drove about Windsor, to Hatfield, to Richmond, etc., Brussels and saw the picture gallery, the have been numerous; of one only will I churches, and the “ Place" with its splenspeak, for that was given us by an Ameri- did buildings. At Ghent we were able can, who came to us and gave us this day to see the beautiful Van Eyck, “ The what he said was to surpass all others, Adoration of the Lamb.” We came into and, having given it, he departed; but the town by one station and were to leave we live in hopes that, true to his promise, it by another. he may yet return.
Another day we went to Antwerp; we Mr. Clarence King arranged every visited the picture gallery and churches; detail of the day; a hundred girls started in the Cathedral we saw a life-size figure early from Waterloo Station, and on arriv- of the Virgin covered with costly jewels ing at Windsor carriages were ready to that was to be carried through the town take fifty round the Park, and the other on the Feast of the Assumption. On that fifty went up the river in a launch; they feast-day we were at Bruges, and were all met for dinner in the Town Hall, and greatly interested in seeing two procesthere, in a splendid room hung round with sions. In the morning the citizens were pictures of kings and queens, they sat dressed as the Flemish nobles and the